One of the greatest ways for Christians to help raise up the next generation of Christ followers is to help children grasp their world view through the lens of Christ and Christian faith.
According to George Barna, here are seven questions that Christian parents and children’s ministry leaders ought to ask and help their children answer to begin to form a Biblical worldview… (these questions come from Barna’s book, Transforming Children Into Spiritual Champions).
1. Does God exist?
2. What is the character and nature of God?
3. How and why was the world created?
4. What is the nature and purpose of humanity?
5. What happens after we die on earth?
6. What spiritual authorities exist?
7. What is truth?
As you are asking and utilizing these questions in the development of your child, you are helping them grasp the essence of faith, not just the facts. Process these with the children in your ministry.
These questions can be asked and answered in different ways as children are involved in (and experiencing their family involvement) in these six pillars of faith development: Worship, Evangelism, Discipleship, Stewardship, Service, and Community.
In many ways, after reading this book (which I realize was written more than ten years ago, now) we become overwhelmed. We can’t juggle all these aspects and also respond to the needs of our kids on so many other fronts. But think of the way that Jesus led people, who at first didn’t understand, but who were transformed into leaders! His disciples went from young and immature to the leaders of God’s church. It’s the same for anyone who raises kids at home or in children’s ministry.
Families who wish for their children to live transformed lives must partner with church for great things! Let them experience growing, community, worship, and all the other pillars. Churches, remember, you aren’t there to fix kids, but to minister to those who respond! You are, on behalf of Christ, working with these students to help them gain a perspective and cultivate a biblical world view and to help families do the same. This will shape their lives more than anything else.
And remember it’s not a destination, but a journey of faith you are on with these kids.
OTHER QUOTES FROM THE BOOK:
“Fewer than 10 percent of parents who regularly attend church with their kids read the Bible together, pray together or participate in an act of service as a family unit.”
“Once the worldview of children has been shaped and embraced, they unconsciously strive to make choices that are consistent with their perspective.”
“The bottom line is that a person’s moral foundation is either based upon Christian spirituality and God’s Word, or it is based on worldly perspectives.”
“During the formative years (5-12) children develop their decision making perspectives and patterns.”
“Effective ministry to children – by parents, or church related student workers – demands substantial energy, time and interaction.”
“The role of the church is to enable people to use their gifts in areas of passion to produce benefits that spill over into the home, the marketplace and the church itself.”
“Effective ministries insists on the regular participation of parents.”
“The longer you wait to pursue influence, the more difficult it is to counteract the influence of other parties that have been imprinting their values upon children.
“Spiritual development is not so much about what your children know but who they are.”
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